Google appears to be testing a new search feature that recommends particular brands related to some user queries.

Barry Schwartz of Search Engine Land said that some people searching for products ranging from digital cameras and laptops to fishing rods are seeing "brands for" recommendations highlighting major manufacturers.

He added that the feature could prove to be a significant online PR boost for these big market players as it would give them "more exposure in the Google search results than possibly ever before".

The search engine itself said that the "brands for" feature is currently just at the testing stage.

Mr Schwartz said the key issue for companies that could benefit from such a feature if it were to be officially rolled out would be finding out how to secure a place in these recommendation boxes.

"Are they reserved for only large brands? If so, what is the rational behind Google testing this feature?" he added.

Earlier this month, Google launched a new site, Ad Innovations, where online marketers can find out about its latest ad formats and features in development.

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